Dingell Leads Introduction of Bipartisan Legislation to Remove PFAS from Firefighter Gear

July 20, 2023

Read the full article by Debbie Dingell

"Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-MI) along with Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Sam Graves (R-MO), Tom Kean, Jr. (R-NJ), Dina Titus (D-NV), Anthony D’Esposito (R-NY), Glenn Ivey (D-MD), and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) today introduced the bipartisan Protecting Firefighters and Advancing State-of-the-Art Alternatives Act (PFAS Alternatives Act), to support development of next-generation PFAS-free turnout gear for firefighters and better protect firefighters from the dangers of their work. 

Recent studies have shown that all three layers of fire fighter turnout gear contain Per and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS), a class of fluorinated chemicals known as “forever chemicals.” PFAS chemicals are persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic, and are linked to harmful human health effects, including reproductive and developmental harms, weakened immune systems, and cancer – the leading cause of firefighter death.

“Firefighters’ jobs are already dangerous enough without worrying about the long-term health risks of being exposed to dangerous PFAS in their turnout gear,” said Dingell. “The PFAS Alternatives Act will remove this unnecessary occupational hazard and help protect firefighters as they work every day to protect us.”